8. The Social Web

By Don Reisinger

1. Cloud Computing

The cloud is the future. Companies big and small are making their way to the cloud for everything from daily tasks to keeping in touch with the office. In the future, all of your software and solutions decisions could relate to the cloud.

2. Consumerization of IT

Consumerization of IT has quickly become a hot-button issue in the enterprise as products like the iPhone and Android-based handsets creep into the office. It's your job as CIO to accept that and capitalize on it. After all, if there's no stopping it, why not embrace it?

3. Apple’s Increasing Influence

Thanks to the increasing adoption of the iPhone and iPad, it's quickly becoming clear that Apple will play an even larger presence in your office in the coming years -- either by you making it so, or employees forcing it upon you.

4. The Growth of Mobile Apps

Not only are enterprise-focused apps available on iOS, Android, and BlackBerry OS, but companies can even create their own proprietary apps for internal use. Not bad.

5. Windows 8

As you consider your plans for desktop operating systems in the future, keep in mind that Microsoft's Windows 8 is heading to store shelves next year. And Windows 7 isn't a bad option if you'd rather upgrade now.

6. An End to Desktops

Sad as it is, desktops are on their way to the junk heap. The PCs restrict productivity to such a point that they don't make any sense for the enterprise anymore. Looking ahead, you'll need to focus on laptops and tablets.

7. A Constrained Economy

The economy could have a profound impact on your plans for the future. If things turn around, you'll probably find your budget increase, allowing you to invest in new technologies. However, if trouble persists, you'll have no other choice but to work with what you have -- unfortunately.

8. The Social Web

Social networks are popular among employees and are being used increasing by companies to promote their brands. And while social networks can create security issues, you need to incorporate them in your plans, or face being overruled by your CEO and CMO.

9. Extremely Low-Energy Servers

Energy is expensive. It's a good time to start investing in what is becoming increasingly prevalent "extremely low-energy servers." They'll help you save some cash, and at the same time, future-proof your company. Not bad.

10. Cloud Storage

Both on-premise and cloud storage are growing as companies keep more data. By storing content in the cloud, you'll be able to have another disaster-recovery option, and in case data is stolen, you can retrieve it from another place. Whatever you do, don't turn your back on cloud storage.

This article was originally published on 11-22-2011